Wisconsin Rep. Paul Ryan says he has a new plan for Medicare. This time his co-author is Democratic Sen. Ron Wyden of Oregon.
The top Republican budget writer in the House created a stir this year with a financial plan that essentially privatized Medicare for future retirees. The Senate rejected it after a backlash. Democrats want to use that plan against Republicans in 2012.
The new Wyden-Ryan plan would keep traditional Medicare as an option for future retirees and leave the eligibility age at 65. But it also sets up a regulated competition with private insurance. Seniors in private plans would get a fixed payment from the government that's more generous than in Ryan's original plan.
Wyden and Ryan say they want to start a bipartisan dialogue on Medicare.